likely Definition

  • 1probably going to happen or be true
  • 2having a high probability of occurring or being true

Using likely: Examples

Take a moment to familiarize yourself with how "likely" can be used in various situations through the following examples!

  • Example

    It's likely that it will rain tomorrow.

  • Example

    She is the likely candidate for the job.

  • Example

    The team is likely to win the game.

  • Example

    It's not likely that he will come back.

likely Synonyms and Antonyms

Phrases with likely

  • the most probable or expected outcome


    The most likely scenario is that we will finish the project by next week.

  • a statement or excuse that is not believable


    He said he was sick, but I think it's a likely story.

  • equally probable or unlikely


    As likely as not, he will be late for the meeting.

Origins of likely

from Old Norse 'līkligr', meaning 'like, similar'


Summary: likely in Brief

The term 'likely' [ˈlaɪkli] refers to something that is probably going to happen or be true, with a high probability of occurrence. It can be used to describe a person as the most probable candidate for a job or a team as the expected winner of a game. Phrases like 'most likely' and 'as likely as not' denote the probability of an event, while 'likely story' implies disbelief in a statement or excuse.

How do native speakers use this expression?